HomeIndian DefenceIAF set to induct its first C-295 aircraft – Indian Defense Analysis

IAF set to induct its first C-295 aircraft – Indian Defense Analysis

1st C-295 of IAF

On September 24, 2021, Ministry of Defence signed a historic contract with M/s Airbus Defence and Space S.A. for acquisition of the C-295 transport aircraft with associated equipment. This is the first project of its kind in which a military aircraft will be manufactured in India by a private company. The total cost of the project is Rs 21,935 crore.

The deal is now close to realisation as India is all set to receive its first of the 56 C-295 transport aircraft. The IAF chief Air Chief Marshal (ACM) V R Chaudhari will receive the first aircraft at the Airbus facility in Spain’s Seville on 13th September 2023. The aircraft will then be flown to Hindan Air Force Station in India where a formal induction ceremony is likely to take place late this month. The 2nd aircraft will also be ready for test flying over the next 2-3 months & will be delivered to the IAF in May.

As per the TATA-Airbus deal, 16 of the 56 C295 aircrafts will be delivered in flyaway condition from Spain within 48 months of signing of the contract which means first 16 C-295 will be delivered between September 2023-2025. The remaining 40 aircrafts will be manufactured in India by TATA Consortium & delivered within 10 years of signing of the contract. The deal between Airbus and TATA will see nearly 90 per cent of the technology transfer. 

The work on the Main Constituent Assembly (MCA) Line at the TASL facility in Hyderabad began in July. The first India-made aircraft will be delivered in 2026, and the remaining 39 will be delivered by 2031.

C-295 capabilities

The C-295 transport aircraft can perform a wide variety of missions effectively which includes tactical and logistical transport, parachute and cargo drop, medical evacuation, and maritime patrol. It has a Capacity to carry 73 troops / 48 paratroopers / 12 stretcher intensive care medevac / 27 stretcher medevac with 4 medical attendants. Normally Its Maximum payload is 7,050 kg but can be overloaded to 9,250 kg.

The aircraft has a rear ramp door for quick reaction para dropping of troops and cargo. It is capable to taking off from short runways of around 1 km in length and land on semi prepared surfaces. It has flight endurance of upto 11 hours.

It will feature modern avionics, intuitive Human Machine Interface(HMI) with touch controls. It will easy the operation of fighter jet easing out the workload of pilots.

The aircraft would have an indigenous Electronic Warfare Suite. The Counter Measures Dispensing System (CMDS) for aircraft will be provided by BDL.

BEL will be providing the DRDO’s Radar Warning Receiver RWR and Ultraviolet based Missile Approach Warning System MAWS for the aircraft.

The induction of C-295 aircrafts will be a significant step towards the modernisation of the transport fleet of Indian Air Force (IAF). The order is also expected to go beyond 56, with more orders expected from the coast guard & navy in the next few years. In addition, the aircraft is also likely to be exported in future to overseas customers.

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